Woodcarving for a good cause

I started “Woodcarving boards for charity” as a project targeted towards helping people in need. Each time you buy one of my hand-carved boards, I will donate 30% of the sale price to UNICEF, the Malala Fund, or the charity of your choice.

 

The idea of bringing together art and charity was inspired by the work of Voblago Club (transl. “for good”) and the Nochlezhka Foundation (transl. “shelter for the night”), who were already actively collaborating with visual artists. I originally thought it might be a wonderful idea to connect my own work, which uses uniquely Russian woodcarving techniques, to the work of these and other Russia-based charities as well as charities abroad.

 

With my boards I wanted to create something that was meaningful as well as beautiful - art with both culturally grounded and universal meaning, which would look attractive and modern in almost any interior space. I wanted to make something that could contribute to a good cause at the same time that it contributed to making a house a home. 

 

By buying “Woodcarving boards for charity” you are helping people in need; people who, for different reasons, have found themselves in a difficult position in their lives. In addition, you are  supporting the dream of an artist working to modernize traditional Russian decorative-applied arts, and make them an element of contemporary interior design. Indeed, owning a piece that ‘still remembers the master’s hand’ may help bring to your home too some of the peace and solace that we all need during this period of difficulty.

 

Natural wood boards take 12 days to complete, those with a painted border take 15 days. 

Standard price - $200, international shipping - 30$. 

In this picture I am wearing a t-shirt bought from a recent collaboration between the Nochlezka Foundation and local Moscow artists

Firebird

Similar to the Phoenix in classical mythology, the Russian Firebird symbolizes strength, perseverance and rebirth, and as an embodiment of the sun, it shines brightly, both day and night. In Russian folk tradition, talismans displaying Firebirds are thought to bring happiness and protection to one’s home.

 

The imagery of the traditional Russian Firebird was specifically chosen for this project. Charity organizations can give people the support they need to build a new life and home. They can help them shine brightly, even through the darkest of times, lifting them up and giving them wings to fly! 

 

By buying this hand-carved board you can help give others the strength to learn, to develop and to survive. And you can bring that same light into your own home - the light of a magical creature that will protect you and bring you strength (as a Russian woman, I guarantee it!)

30x18x2 cm - Basswood. 

Standard price - $200, international shipping - 30$. 

Foundation

While the mystical creature at the center of Firebird is surrounded by floral ornaments and flowing curves, Foundation rests on an intricate design of lines and geometric precision, giving one the feeling of a simple and reserved stability.

 

This too is symbolic. We live in an often chaotic world, where we surround ourselves with objects that help us keep a solid foundation under our feet. They make us feel safe and they make us feel secure.

 

But for those going through hard times, for those without a home, it can be difficult to find these anchor points. Charity organizations can help those in need find their footing and create structure and stability. They can help people build the foundations of their future.

 

By buying this hand-carved board you can help remind others that they are not alone, that there is someone they can lean on when they need help finding their foundation. And you can bring this same calming rhythm and colorful energy to your own home as well. 

30x18x2 cm - Basswood. 

Standard price - $200, international shipping - 30$.

Malala fund's photo

UNICEF's photo

Charity organizations

You can choose one of the two charities below or include in your message the name of the charity organisation you would like to donate to.

1) The Malala Fund was founded in 2013 to champion every girl’s right to 12 years of free, safe, quality education. The Fund creates a more equal world by making sure all girls can go to school. It invests in education advocates and activists who are challenging the policies and practices that prevent girls from going to school in their communities. The Malala Fund works in regions where the most girls miss out on secondary education for different reasons. I choose to support the Malala Fund because I believe access to education should be a basic right for every child in the world! 

2) "UNICEF" works in over 190 countries and territories to save children's lives, to defend their rights, and to help them fulfil their potential, from early childhood through adolescence. And we never give up.”

 

I regularly watch documentaries from other countries to try and keep my mind open and to stay in touch with what’s happening in our world. Many of the films I have seen have featured refugee camps from the war in Syria. 

 

When I see these camps (many supported by UNICEF), I remember my own childhood. I was born in the early 90s right as the Soviet Union was collapsing. It was understandably hard for my mother to provide me with food, basic clothing and even shoes - practically everyone in the entire country was struggling to provide their children with these basic things! My mom worked hard to make my childhood liveable. It turned out alright for me - the economic situation in Russia got better and we were able to get through that crisis together. 

 

But now, in parts of the world stricken by war, disease and corruption, so many children are in a position where their lives may never get better, at least not without help! I choose to support UNICEF because they work in the hardest hit regions of the world to provide security, basic food, clothing and shoes to countless children. They help these children survive and give them a chance to tell their own stories!